Uncover London, Part 6: Burnt Oak

Last Saturday, a sunny haze enswathed north west London. It was a haze that resembled the bright clouds that had hung mysteriously over a scene in one of the preceding night’s dreams, obscuring softly. Despite feeling a little ill, as had been the case for what felt like weeks, I decided to head out and explore London. It’d been a while since my last trip, as life had either taken over, or rather I’d allowed it to get in the way.

I left the house with the usual: water, camera, wallet, sunglasses and a smile. I took the Overground from Queen’s Park to Euston, then changed and got the Northern Line to Burnt Oak in Zone 4, north London. I chuckled to myself on arriving at the station, as the aridity of my new location’s name contrasted massively with my desire to pee. Being that the city is fairly devoid of public toilets that aren’t depressingly gross with only crass marker-pen messages scrawled across walls to cheer you up, I had to find somewhere on arrival. Luckily, when I emerged from the station, pushing my way through large glass doors with beautiful wooden frames, I found myself on a busy high street. Continue reading

Uncover London, Part Four: Cockfosters

The weather over the last few days had proved to be drab and depressing, which was not unusual for London at this time of year. When I awoke, I opened the curtains with trepidation. Would I have to dig deep to create the sunshine within, or would the skies illuminate a city of possibility and opportunity? Pulling back the material, the naked tree outside my window protruded with a promise to bloom soon, and thankfully behind it lay a clear blue sky. Having been uncomfortably reclusive over the Easter weekend, the sight of the sun inspired me to try and shake off the isolation and head into the city to explore.

Deliberating over which coat to wear, I put my sturdy winter Parka on, grabbed my camera, a bottle of water and descended the hill to Queen’s Park tube. Immediately I regretted my choice of clothing as I began to swelter in the late morning sun. Never one to admit defeat, I continued down Brondesbury Park, past families, lovers and friends who emitted a vibrant, positive glow in the expanse of the holiday weekend. I’d decided a while ago that the next destination for the Uncover London series would be Cockfosters, the end of the Piccadilly Line, miles away in God-knows-where. I knew nothing about the area, and this was an integral part of my trip. I had not looked it up online, and had shut my ears when anyone I’d discussed my idea with had a story to offer about Cockfosters. All I knew is that I’d heard the name on the Underground’s speakers for many years, that it was far away, and that the name was an unattractive mixture of body-part slang and a tasteless English beer.

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